BANDURIST AND CONDUCTOR YAROSLAV BABUNIAK DIES

31.08.12


Homin
Homin - Yaroslav Babuniak seated, front row, second from right

It is with great sadness that we heard of the death of Yaroslav Babuniak, our diaspora's best known and best loved bandurist and conductor.

Yaroslav Babuniak was born in Berezany in Western Ukraine into a musical family, learning violin and bandura.

The end of WWII found him in the Ukrainian camp in Rimini where he was co-founder of the male voice choir ‘ Burlaka’. He settled in Manchester and performed at the Eisteddfod Festival in Llangollen as a soloist on the bandura and gained 1st place. But his love of choral singing led him to form the world famous Homin male voice choir in Manchester, which for many years was the representative choir for AUGB.

Under his direction, Homin toured the world at many musical festivals. There were two tours of Canada and USA, visits to France, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Holland, as well as prestigious concerts in the UK. The Homin choir often attended the Eisteddfod Festival and regularly gained 1st place. In the 1950s Homin refused to appear under a Soviet Ukrainian flag. Only when the flag was replaced by the traditional blue and yellow flag would they Homin go onto the stage. One of his greatest ambitions was to tour Ukraine with Homin which was eventually realised with one of the highlights being a concert in the town of his birth, Berezany.

He also conducted the youth choirs, 'Trembita' and 'Rusalka Dnistrova', inspiring a younger generation with a love of Ukrainian choral music.

He leaves a wife Tamara, daughters Shania & Roma and son Slavko.Вічна Йому Память !

 

 



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